KENYA – Equity Group, a financial service holding company, has partnered with CFAO Kenya Ltd and CFAO Agri Limited (CFAO Group) to provide farmers with 80 percent financing that will enable them to purchase farm inputs and machinery such as tractors.
Ultimately, the three entities seek to provide local farmers and other primary players in the agriculture value chain with easy access to farm inputs and machinery in support of enhancing food security and empowering small-scale farmers to farm the future.
Under the financing plan, farmers will be able to adjust their repayment terms based on the farming season, therefore, promoting the increased adoption of mechanization in agriculture.
“We are doing everything we can to Increase agriculture production. We want to secure the values and aspirations of our people and with agriculture being 33% of Kenya’s GDP, capturing 40% of employment with 40% of that in rural areas and with almost 65% of agriculture accounting for foreign exchange, for us at Equity this is important,” Equity Group Managing Director and CEO, Dr. James Mwangi said.
“I commend CFAO for focusing on what is critical to our people. As Equity, we are happy to partner with CFAO and seek to expand this partnership beyond the national level to the regional level, given that CFAO is present in 53 African countries.”
Through the partnership, farmers and other players within the agriculture ecosystem will continue enjoying affordable financing from Equity therefore offering them opportunities to purchase Case IH and Captain Tractors through the Bank’s asset finance credit facilities.
“Africa is endowed with favourable climate that allows farmers to grow food throughout the year, a potential that the private sector can tap through partnerships such as the one between CFAO and Equity Group,” CFAO Chairman Ambassador Dennis Awori said.
“Africa has lagged behind the rest of the world in agricultural productivity mainly due to low mechanization and poor agricultural practices, and we are looking forward to working with Equity Group in other countries to support the empowerment of farmers, who in turn can support the world in its broken food supply chains due to both the COVID-19 pandemic and the Russia-Ukraine crisis.”
Equity has launched the “Africa Recovery and Resilience” Plan which is a KSh700 billion (US$5.94bn) stimulus plan that aims to champion the building back better of the African economy through supporting various sectors of the economy, with agriculture productivity and ecosystem financing and development – from production to distribution to retail to customers – at its core.
CFAO Agri Chairman Thomas Bernard said CFAO aims to help farmers improve their yields and embrace commercial agriculture as opposed to practicing only subsistence farming.
“I thank Equity for this relationship which will go a long way in supporting smallholder farmers. Agriculture is a risky business, and it is important that private sector stakeholders combine efforts to help hedge against the risk by providing mechanization, fertilizers, and financing,” he noted.
CFAO Agri is the agribusiness division of CFAO Kenya.